Syed Mushtaq Ali T20: Delhi gets the better of Haryana

Delhi’s campaign in the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy stayed on course with an easy seven-wicket victory against Haryana for its first win of the tournament here on Wednesday. Chasing 153, Delhi managed to reach the target in just 17 overs.

Dhruv Shorey goes for a big one in New Delhi on Wednesday.   -  Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

Delhi’s campaign in the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy stayed on course with an easy seven-wicket victory against Haryana for its first win of the tournament here on Wednesday. Chasing 153, Delhi managed to reach the target in just 17 overs.

With its selection policies being questioned right till the tournament started, Delhi made just one change to the side, bringing in medium-pacer Subodh Bhati instead of young leg-spinner Tejas Baroka and it was the best decision for the side. Bhati picked up three wickets in his four overs, bowling a disciplined line that did not allow Haryana batsmen to break free.

It was a far better display from Delhi in every department even as the Haryana batsmen threw their bat at every ball but fell trying to accelerate the innings. Promoting Harshal Patel to open the innings did not work a second time as Navdeep Saini dismissed him cheaply.

Thereafter, the top-order batsmen all got starts but faltered.

Shubham Rohilla (44) was caught short of crease after an accurate throw by Lalit Yadav from backward square leg and Chaitanya Bishnoi (65) got a life when he survived a stumping but top-edged Bhati for his first wicket, the ball going too high only to be caught by a waiting Rishabh Pant before the lower-order failed.

Delhi's chase did not have the best of starts when Pant was cleaned up by Patel and Gautam Gambhir, who suffered a leg injury the day before but was cleared to play after a scan revealed no major worries, missed the line from Ashish Hooda to be rapped on his pads. But Dhruv Shorey and Nitish Rana had no difficulties dispatching the Haryana batsmen to all corners. Their 82-run partnership in 54 balls set the tone for an easy win in a competition that would see the top two teams from each zone advance to the Super League.

In the day's other match, Punjab firmed its claims to one of those slots with an eight-wicket win against Services. Manpreet Grewal broke the Services batting with four wickets in his first three overs, including two in the fourth, to ensure there would be no big total to chase. Even though Amit Pachhara and Vikas Hathwala tried to build a mini partnership, there was little they could do in the face of some disciplined Punjab bowling. Services managed just 140, a target Punjab leisurely chased down in 19.1 overs. Mandeep Singh showed signs of recovering his form after back surgery with an unbeaten 84.

Brief scores: Haryana 153 for six in 20 overs (Chaitanya Bishnoi 65, Shubham Rohilla 44; Subodh Bhati 3-25) lost to Delhi 154-3 in 17 overs (Dhruv Shorey 59 not out, Nitish Rana 39).

Points: Delhi 4, Haryana 0.

Services 140 for nine in 20 overs (Amit Pachhara 37, Vikas Hathwala 25; Manpreet Grewal four for 18) lost to Punjab 141 for two in 19.1 overs (Mandeep Singh 84 not out, Yuvraj Singh 35 not out; Diwesh Pathania two for 17).

Points: Punjab 4, Services 0.